Fashion Designer Ara Jo Print Designer Hayley Crompton Photographs by Haze MUA Valerie Saint Amand Hairstylist Louise Ghewy Assistant 1 Michael Stuart Daley Assistant 2 Adama Sambou
Since when I was 13, I didn’t just want to wear pretty clothes, I wanted MAKE clothes when I was seeing magazines. That’s how I started. Since then, I entered fashion university in South Korea and studied more at Central Saint Martins Womenswear after that.
Describe the ideal woman who would wear your pieces…confident, sexy, smart etc?
Yes, a confident woman. A woman who can enjoy dressing up especially like my outfits; very sexy but still very modern and sophisticated.
Talk us through the initial concept behind your latest collection?
Super Ego; celebrity behavior. I wanted to look at the celebrities posh life style. Their out going, clubbing, travelling etc. and the key of this collection is a girl with ‘look at me’ attitude!
Is it for you to get involved in every aspect of a collection’s lookbook, with make up, styling, models?
Definitely. I want to look at the whole story. So I’d like to discuss all part of fashion with other people. As I suggest my ideas, other professionals( MUA, Hairstylist etc) also suggest other ideas as well and we mix up with them. That’s why I love collaborating with other talented people. As a fashion designer, I have to showcase my work as the most of it so I think its kind of necessary to get involved all aspect of look book because that’s how represents myself as well.
Is it hard as a fashion designer, after months of sketches, research, studio time, lookbooks and show to simply live it behind an consider the collection finished and move on?
Nothing is easy but being creative is really hard. I don’t want to use a word ‘finish’ after look books of collection, that’s how the collection starts as I showcase in public. I start to get feedback from people and get contact from people. And I learn more and more each collection so all my collections. It is hard work but I absolutely love what I do so I always try to enjoy all my process of work.
I could say the things “I was surprised” instead of not preparing. I didn’t realize how much I’m into my work, fashion. Once I start to focus on working, I can’t do anything but working. Inspiring and creating. I thought I have just worked hard but it wasn’t. I really really love doing this and when I’m in fashion environment, there’s some kind of high energy that I can’t explain. So I forget everything but completely concentrating on working.
Would you ever consider doing a collection for a high street department store as a means to get different clientel?
I’d like to. I’m a open minded person so I’d like to try many things not just about fashion. But yes I’d like to get involved working in high fashion street. As you can see, my work is more Couture style which I love, but I’d also like to try more commercial parts so I could learn another fashion parts.
What is it about London that attracts so many creative personalities and have you lived and worked anywhere else?
London gives you freedom. You can do anything what you want, that’s why I could be creative as a fashion designer. The whole environment of London gives you the feeling that you want to be inspired, and you will be. I’ve been travelling around the world to showcase my work but I can say London is the base of my work.
I’ve come back to my country South Korea for a while but I am planning to move to New York soon. So I am very excited what I would experience there!
How important is it to have more government facilited financial help awarded to people who have aspirations of being in the fashion industry?
How important? I’m not sure how to answer. First thing is its really hard to get financial help/sponsorship because you have to prove your ability not just as a fashion designer but also as a business man. Its like you can jump to next level, you can make your label higher in fashion industry. It is MONEY which means you have much more options to do your collection. The person who has sponsorship? I have to say you are really lucky and I wish I could get sponsorship as well.
What are you working on at the moment?